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Netflix may crack down on password sharing

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Netflix may soon place a limit on password sharing.

Greg Peters, the company’s product chief, said Netflix is monitoring the issue of users skirting monthly subscription payments.

“We’re looking at the situation and we’ll see those consumer-friendly ways to push on the edges of that,” Peters said during a recent interview on quarterly earnings. “But I think we’ve got no big plans to announce at this point in time in terms of doing something different there.”

Because Netflix hasn’t announced any specifics, Eyewitness News went to Johnson & Wales’ Nick Tella to find out how a company like Netflix could limit password sharing.

“It would be more administrative overhead and controls on their part,” Tella said. “Right now, I think it would be very difficult to do.”

Tella said Netflix could require users to register each device they may use to stream content. Tella said Netflix could also block access based on IP addresses.

“It would only work where all the users are in one house and they would whitelist that IP address,” Tella said. “If they see a login from a different IP address, they’ll just block it through blacklisting, so they won’t even be able to access the system.”

Netflix already limits the number of devices that can stream simultaneously from one account.

A 2018 Magid survey revealed about 10% of people admit to sharing passwords for streaming services.

Netflix did not respond to Call 12 for Action’s questions for this report.

Susan Campbell (scampbell@wpri.com) is the Call 12 for Action and Target 12 consumer investigator for WPRI 12 and Fox Providence. Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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